Meeting with Omar Alghabra

Neil’s Mom hand delivers a letter to be delivered to Prime Minister Trudeau.

Neil and Ferdi have now been moved to a cell on the third floor of Lapas Cipinang prison. The cell is occupied by an inmate convicted on drug charges.

The men are now able to receive meals prepared by friends and family. Neil’s wife Tracy is able to visit Neil on a daily basis for up to 2 hours and bring basic supplies and food to him. She said “Neil is showing great resilience but the conditions inside this prison are deplorable and she is concerned that her husband’s health could easily deteriorate rapidly.”

On Monday February 29th, Canadian Ambassador Donald Bobiash visited Neil at Lapas Cipinang. He reiterated to Neil and Ferdi that the Canadian government will be ‘relentless’ in their efforts to bring Neil home. Then on Friday, March 4th, Neil’s brother Guy and his mother Corinne met with the Parliamentary Secretary for Global Affairs Omar Alghabra at his constituency in office Mississauga (see attached photo credit Janet Gallucci).  Mr. Alghabra reiterated Canada’s commitment to Neil’s case and provided assurances to the family that the government is working at the highest levels to ensure a just and speedy resolution to this case. Neil’s mother gave a hand-written letter to Mr. Alghabra which she asked him to deliver to Prime Minister Trudeau, to which he obliged. She asked Prime Minister Trudeau to find a way to bring Neil and his wife, Tracy, back to the safety of Canada as soon as possible. She also commended the work of Minister Stéphane Dion and said “our family is most grateful to Minister Dion for his very strong response to Neil’s re-arrest and for his efforts to get this grave injustice resolved.” Guy and his partner Janet Gallucci are travelling to Ottawa this week for meetings with various MPs and the Department of Global Affairs. They will also meet with Mr. Alghabra again.

Legal process next steps: Neil’s lawyers will now wait for the Supreme Court to write and deliver the full verdict to the South Jakarta District Court (SJDC). This process is expected to take up to a month. Once the verdict is delivered to the SJDC, Neil’s lawyers can access the document and begin to prepare and submit documents for a judicial review. The prosecutor can also submit appeal documents.

In his weekly column on justice and politics in Indonesia writer Kevin O’Rourke comments on the Supreme Court’s decision and goes on to outline the process of the judicial review.

Kevin refers to the Supreme court ruling of Bantleman and Tjiong’s case as “a victory that defies logic, offends justice, damages the cause of child protection, and undermines investor confidence at a time when economic opportunities were improving.” 

He goes on to explain that The Jakarta Intercultural School Case Summary v1″Bantleman and Tjiong will have one more opportunity for an extraordinary appeal, or ‘judicial review’ (peninjauan kembali, or ‘PK’). This instrument examines the procedures and circumstances of the decision-making in the three verdicts to date. Typically, filing a PK requires either the introduction of new evidence (‘novum’), or the identification of error or neglect on the part of judges. Given the neglected evidence and irregularities of the case, ample grounds exist for initiating a PK, which would then undergo consideration by a Supreme Court panel. However, the time frame for bringing about a PK may be lengthy, perhaps over a year. Moreover, given the course of matters thus far, the prospects for overturning the case will be uncertain. And until then, Bantleman and Tjiong will face grim conditions, as convicted child rapists in Cipinang” Kevin O’Rourke Reformasi Weekly.

In Jakarta Kontras (The Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence) spoke out. See translated article attached: KONTRAS SAYS Supreme Court HAS FAILED IN IDENTIFYING ENGINEERED FACTS OF JIS CASE.

JIS Civil case update: The $125 million USD dollar civil lawsuit was dismissed by the South Jakarta District Court on August 10th, 2015. An appeal was filed by the plaintiff, albeit after the deadline for appeal, but was still accepted by the High Court. The civil suit is now being reviewed by the High Court and a decision on this case is pending.